When Emotional Eating Rears Its Ugly Head

Hi, my name is Natasha Kisten-Skuce and I am an emotional eater.

This started at a very early age. A chaotic and abusive childhood saw me turn to emotional eating to help deal with the sadness and pain I was experiencing. Before I knew it, it had become a coping mechanism that helped me cope with life for almost four decades.

When specialists banned me from doing any, (and I mean any) exercise early in December 2018 I was guttered. Over the past two years I had managed to replace emotional eating with exercise and then all or a sudden it was taken away. To add insult to injury I also had to wear the moon boot again. Within 2 weeks of laying on the coach and watching soppy Christmas movies, I had fallen into a depression.  It wasn’t only the lack of exercise that was getting to me, it was the not being able to drive and not being able to take care of my kids.  I lost my independence in the blink of an eye. 

So What is  Emotional Eating?

Emotional eating is using food to make yourself better.  In essence its stress eating to satisfy your emotional  needs, rather than your physical hunger.  Opting for junk food, sugar laced goodies or carb heavy foods will be high on your agenda if you are an emotional eater

New year, New Challenges

I started 2019 without the moon boot, but the swelling was the same and the pain had intensified despite following doctors orders. I’m beyond frustrated because it felt like everything was in vain. Another MRI confirmed my initial injury had healed however there was excessive fluid build-up. The best solution was a cast for 6 weeks which would completely immobilize my right foot. In all honesty, I wasn’t mentally prepared for another setback nor was I prepared for 6 weeks with my foot in a cast. The long and short of it is that this injury has been on-going for 7 months and has affected my life in such an overwhelming way.

I couldn’t deal with being depressed and crying all the time because it’s not who I am and not how I deal with things. Physical pain also isn’t something I’m accustomed to thanks to my high pain threshold, but this time it was different and I started emotional eating. 

How to Stop Emotional Eating

Now that I have come clean about my emotional eating, a strategy to take control of my eating and my life is not negotiable.  Here’s my plan:-

    1. Identify my trigger foods. Carbs and sugars are my happy place. I’ve never been in denial about that.

 

    1. Replace trigger foods. Get rid of the foods that I’m likely to binge on. Reorganise my refrigerator and grocery cupboards for healthy eating.

 

    1. Back to regular meals. Skipping meals almost always leads to over-eating. Definitely back to eating healthy meals prepared by myself.

 

    1. Exercise. While I can’t do cardio of any sort or any weight-bearing exercises on my lower body, I can still do yoga, stretching and meditation. All of which are great ways to deal with stress.

 

  1. Be kind to myself. Despite having dropped the ball in terms of managing my emotional eating, I need to be kind to myself as I’m human after all. Mental well-being is ultimately the biggest priority.
 
In two weeks I will find out if all of this was worth the pain, frustrations and emotional roller coaster.  In the mean time I’m working on getting back on track.  
 
Let me know if you have an suggestions for coping with emotional eating.  Any help will be greatly appreciated.  Thanks in advance lovelies 
 
Until next time
 
Natasha 

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